Should Basques of
the Diaspora make a gesture to be included as part of the larger
Basque community of Euskal Herria? Arguably
there are almost as many people of Basque descent--and choice--who live outside the
homeland in the Diaspora. But there's no motto that
embraces this last group--is it time we created one?
is the familiar motto coined by the Basque explorer
Antoine-Thomson d'Abbadie in the nineteenth century, from the
Basque words zazpiak meaning "the seven ones" and bat
meaning "one." It translates then as "the seven ones [are] one."
Note however that while there are seven regions, there are only six
emblems because Nafarroa & Benafarroa share the same one.
Basque cousins living in the Basque Country have a
vague idea of the Basque Diaspora, and that is
partly because we Basques of the Diaspora haven't
done much to promote ourselves in their
For the 21st century do we not need an updated
motto? Many people of Basque descent live outside the
Basque Country in the
However, they are not usually associated with most Basque
references; "zazpiak-bat" only references the seven historical
regions. How about if we add one more to include
ourselves and make it eight: Zortziak-Bat! This does not take away from identifying
the centrality of the Basque homeland. The Basque story will always be
connected to the homeland, but that original tree has sprouted
new seedlings around the world.
This name and the concept would be readily understood by most
Basques, thus requiring less translation and/or explanation.
This could serve to raise greater awareness of the
Diaspora's connection with "Basqueness." And
while there are distinctions from one province to
the other, and from a Basque community in Australia
to one in Mexico City, this aims to accentuate what
it is that we have in common: Euskaldun bizi nahia--the
will to live as Basque.
the black eight ball
1. The number 8 is symbolic for the two circles that
2. We recognize that we as the Diaspora are somewhat of
the "black sheep" of the Basque family--in a good way of
3. In billiards/pool you win when you hit the eight ball
Any more ideas? Send to